Friday, January 10, 2014

38 cents

Since I am not ready to share what happened yesterday....thought I would share another story from this week.

I was in the "icky" Wal-mart (we all know the one....the one you don't usually go to, but you were in that area and it was easier....).  I was already losing patience because I couldn't find something in the store, and my patience was low from stuff from earlier in the day.

I was heading toward check out, and got stuck behind a woman in a scooter.  Ok, I will just go around....then she zig zagged!  Oh good grief.  OK...moving on....see an "express" check out that just had a woman who appeared to be at the end of her transaction....

Great.  Put my stuff on the counter and prepared to be done in there.  The cashier and the customer were being very chatty, but ok.....

Then the cashier said to the woman "Do you have 38 cents?"\


The customer starts raising her voice.  "Oh no!  I don't have 38 cents!  Oh no!  Oh no!"  Before it got any further, I just handed the cashier a dollar bill.  The woman thanked me, and went on her way.  The cashier thought I was so nice for doing that.

Maybe a part of it was nice...the majority of it was self-serving.  I didn't want to be there any longer than I had to.  It was easier to pay the 38 cents than have the customer digging through her pockets looking for change (she had paid for her purchases with a gift card).  And certainly easier than the customer having to decide on something to put back and have the cashier void the transaction.

38 cents in my world is nothing.  Even when things are tight....38 cents won't make a difference.  This isn't the first time I have done something like this, and my quality of life is not any different having "donated" the money in the past.  But I guess 38 cents meant something to them.  So I will let them think I am a nice person (which I am....but like I have already admitted...for me, this act really wasn't "nice"). 

Not sure if this falls in the Random Acts of Kindness, since it really was more about me than about the act.  And for the the past I have paid for things for other patrons in similar circumstances just because I wanted to.

So I will call this one a net of ZERO....nice act, but for self-serving reasons.


  1. Kindness doesn't always have to be separate from your own interests. And it varies from who sees the act. I am sure for that person, it made them happy, and the cashier also. It's one of those "don't let your left hand know what the right one is doing". Let's leave it at a small act of kindness. I gave one of those Food Lion coupons ($4 off a $25 purchase or something) that printed at the end of my purchase, and I knew I wasn't going to use it, because I just don't buy that much that often, so I gave it to the woman on the next register, it looked like a grandmother with 3 grandchildren, and she was digging through coupons and what not. She was really happy! That's all that matters.

  2. While 38 cents means almost nothing to you it obviously meant a great deal to the other customer. That you were tired, stressed, and just wanted to get the heck out of there is irrelevant. Instead of handing the cashier the 38 cents you could have had a meltdown of your own because you're tired and stressed and want to get home. Either way, it was a kind thing to do no matter what your motives behind it.

  3. You are so much like me. I will never get credit for all I do because I complain all the time about what I do and it negates the reward:)

  4. No matter what it is still a random act of kindness even if you did it to get out of there :) .38 was needed and you provided it when you could have just waited for them to take something off. So I say yes it was a kindness done by helped someone when you could have just ignored them

  5. Yep. Seen this a few times in my time as a cashier, and in most cases people do it because it's just a few cents (or even a dollar) and they don't want to stand around all day. I guess it's an act of kindness, but I'm putting it more on the side of "It's a small amount of money and it saves me time."

    That was nice of you anyway though.